Sunday, June 12, 2016

Documentary Review: World War II in Colour: The Island War: Episode 11

In this we are presented the continuing saga in the Pacific.  This episode begins with the decimating of the Japanese Carrier force.  By the end of the war, all the Japanese carriers had been sunk.  Many of them were lost during the Battle of the Philippine Sea and the Battle of Leyte Bay.  Both of these fights centered around the Allies retaking the Philippines.
General Douglas MacArthur
There were two ideas of the U.S. and Allies conquering Japan.  The Navy favored an island hopping type war, getting them closer to Japan faster.  On the other hand, the Army favored a land battle, especially in the Philippines.  General Douglas MacArthur had promised he would return, and wanted to keep that promise.  The Navy felt that isolating the Philippines, they would eventually surrender.  The government proceeded with both plans.  The MacArthur plan was successful, but resulted in a high loss of life on both sides.  It also completed the destruction of the Japanese carrier fleet.
As the Americans approached Japan, one island at a time, the Japanese became more and more desperate.  The resorted to Kamikaze attacks at sea and in the air.  These attacks were very effective, and were devastating to American morale.  The Americans were looking for a quicker way to end the war, rather than facing the prospect of invading the Japanese homeland.

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